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Chinese super-realistic robot highlighted at WIRED NextFest exhibition
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08:03, September 14, 2007

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World renown WIRED Magazine's annual WIRED NextFest exhibition kicked off in Los Angeles on Thursday, highlighting a Chinese super-realistic robot.

WIRED NextFest is a unique world's fair-style event that showcases the people, ideas and technologies that will change our world in the coming years, organizers said.

The exhibition bringing the future of entertainment, transportation, health, robotics, energy and sustainability, security, communications and more to audiences, organizers said.

What makes this year's exhibition unique is a super-realistic robot which attracts throngs of spectators at the three-day exhibition being held at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

The robot, described by Times magazine as "one of the best inventions of 2006," resembles Zou Renti, founder of the Xi'an Superman Sculpture Research Council. While the mechanical Zou Renti (named after the inventor) can move its face and speak, its most impressive feature is its skin, which is made of silica gel and looks so lifelike that some expo attendees couldn't tell the real Zou from his double.

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa opened the festivities with the attendance of 9,000 school children and the entire " Endeavor" space shuttle crew.

Immediately following the event's opening ceremony, the X PRIZE Foundation announced its largest prize yet to sponsor a 30-million- dollar competition for private lunar explorations.

Joined by Google, the foundation will motivate and inspire new generations of inventors and engineers to build and launch a privately-financed human vehicle into space.

The foundation is famous for issuing multi-million-dollar scientific challenges, and best known for hosting the Ansari X Prize contest that led to the first manned private spaceflight in 2004.

Peter Diamandis, chief executive of the foundation, said in a statement that the goal of the competition is to stimulate the development of low-cost methods for robotic space exploration.

He said that space exploration has dramatically enhanced the quality of human life and may ultimately lead to solutions to some of today's most pressing environmental problems, like energy independence and climate change.

Google is also offering a second prize of 5 million dollars and bonus prizes of 5 million dollars for teams that meet additional challenges, such as finding lunar ice.

Built on the success of the previous three years, WIRED NextFest exhibition brings together innovations from inventors from around the world for both children and adults alike to showcase the advances in communication, design, entertainment, energy, the environment, medicine, health, robotics, security and transportation.

Source: Xinhua

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